2007 Porsche 911 4S Starter And Battery Issues
Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Bernie Pawlik, Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver, 30 years serving customers in Vancouver and 22 time winners of Best Auto Repair in Vancouver as voted by their customers. And we're talking Porsches today. How are you doing Bernie?
Bernie: Doing very well.
Mark: So 2007 Porsche 911, which has having starter and battery issues, what was happening to this Porsche?
Bernie: Yeah, so the owner's complaint was that the vehicle is hard to start when it was hot, generally fine when it's cold but when you drive the vehicle for a little while, stop for five minutes, go to crank it over, it wouldn't crank over very easily. It was very laboured and hard to start.
Mark: So that sounds like a difficult diagnosis. What tests did you do to address this concern?
Bernie: Well of course, having been in the auto business for more than 30 years you know, there's a lot of knowledge that's gained from that. And typically, you know, when you have a vehicle, it's hard to start when it's hot like that, it can often be a bad battery. Sorry not a bad battery, a bad starter. The heat builds up around the starter, it can often, if there's a problem with the starter, it can often cause it to not start easily. This builds up resistance in the starter. So that's just something from years of experience of intuition.
But of course there's always reasons. Other things that cause it. So we do some tests on it. We basically test power draw to the starter. We have some test equipment, that will test starters, and sometimes it's accurate and sometimes it's not. But in this case, we can definitely see that the starter, once it was hot, was drawing way too much power and not in an even manner. So that was what was causing our issue.
Mark: So what would cause the starter to be sensitive to heat?
Bernie: Basically you know, they just develop problems internally. Things wear out and they need to be replaced. So you only got so many starts out of a vehicle, although a lot of times they do these days they do tend to last a long time. But in this case, there was an issue.
The other issue with these cars is they also have a known problem too, is that the positive battery cable that runs in the engine compartment has problems as well. So that was something we addressed when we looked at the vehicle.
Mark: So how did you repair the concern?
Bernie: Yeah, so we, basically access the starter and also looked at the positive battery cable and we noted that the positive battery cable is also very old. So well worth replacing while we were in there to make sure that that wasn't part of the issue. Cause that can certainly cause problems. Similar kind of problems that we discussed.
Let's just get into a few pictures here.
So there's our 911. You may recognize this if you watch our other podcast because it was featured in another podcast. I figured it was just so interesting having a car with two distinctly different problems. I figured, why not do two good podcasts about it? So this is our second one on this particular car. So our nice 911S convertible, 4S all wheel drive, lots of traction, real fun car to drive.
So starter. There's the starter motor. Just one of the units we replaced. There's there's a solenoid here. The high resistance will develop and there are brushes in a number of motor type pieces. It's not very scientific, but you know, things just tend to go wrong as starters age. So there's the starter.
And then the battery cable. Which again mentioned, it's a common problem. A lot of times there'll be problems in this connection area here, which causes the problem. So this cable basically runs from the front of the vehicle. There's a junction, and it connects up to the main battery cable from the front of the vehicle. And then this runs through the engine compartment, again, subject to a lot of heat, you know, and heat, it's hard on components.
This terminal here attaches to the main power terminal on the starter. And this goes to the alternator. So you've got all your main 12 volt power running through this unit here. So having good connections all the way through here is critical, a) to charge the battery through this and b) to you know, have enough power to start the car.
Mark: And so how did it start after replacement?
Bernie: Oh, it was awesome. Like really noticeable difference. And you know, when the car was cold, it seemed to crank over fine, but it was actually noticeably different with the new starter and the battery cable on a cold start to. Just higher RPM, faster turning, more responsive. And of course with the engine hot, it started just the same as normal. So problem solved.
Mark: So I know with Porsche is especially, this is a small, very tightly compact sports car with a lot of components tucked in everywhere everything's pretty difficult to access. So was this a long time consuming job?
Bernie: It takes a little while. It's not like an old fashioned V8 Chevy where you can pull a starter in and out really fast. There's a lot of components to remove around the intake system to access a starter, but you know, when you work in these cars, you get kind of used to, it's a different style of working on a car, then you kind of have to push in there to reach into the engine compartment. They don't always have all the best access ports that you'd like to have. So it's a different style. It's a bit of a time consuming job, but not as bad as some vehicles where they actually buried the starter right under the intake manifold and you have to pull a lot of stuff off to get at it.
Mark: And as you mentioned, everything's running good after all the repairs are done.
Yeah. Good car. Lots of fun.
Mark: So there you go. If you're looking for service for your Porsche or Porsche in Vancouver, the guys to see are Pawlik Automotive. You can reach them at (604) 327-7112 to book your appointment. They speak it both ways. Porsche or Porsche, whichever way you really feel that has to be said. It's totally cool and you can check out the website pawlikautomotive.com. Of course hundreds of videos on YouTube. Pawlik Auto Repair. And thanks so much for listening. Give us a five star rating wherever you listen to podcasts. We do appreciate it and thanks Bernie.
Bernie: Thanks, Mark. Thank you for watching.